Demand for European fund labels grew in 1Q2020


Luxflag was the third largest European sustainable and responsible investment fund labelling agency, as of 31 March 2020, according to a French study released this week. Pictured: A Luxflag poster is seen during “Luxflag Sustainable Investment Week”, 22 October 2019. Photo: Patricia Pitsch/Maison Moderne 

The paper was published by Novethic, a sustainable finance research and promotion outfit owned by France’s Caisse des Dépôts, a state investment bank.

The study looked at 9 of the 10 European labels that verify asset managers’ ethical and responsible investment claims.

Novethic said there are a total of “nearly 60,000” investment funds on the European market. As of 31 March, 935 of them had received labels certifying that they followed the climate finance, ESG or other responsible investment strategy that managers promised. Collectively these 935 funds had €327bn in assets under management. That was a rise of 129 funds and 110% in assets compared to the previous quarter.

Label ISR of France topped the table with 395 labelled funds managing €141bn in assets.

Towards Sustainability of Belgium place second with 355 funds managing €168bn.

Luxflag ranked third with 124 funds managing €52bn.

However, Luxflag said assets under management at the 196 investment funds it checks totalled €106bn at the end of the first quarter. The difference is due to, as Paperjam pointed out, Novethic using a different methodology, which excluded microfinance funds.

Rounding out the rankings were Umweltzeichen of Austria (119 funds, €21bn), FNG-Siegel of Germany, Austria and Switzerland (104 funds, €28bn), Nordic Swan Ecolabel of the Nordic countries (33 funds, €9.8bn) and Novethic’s own Greenfin Label (19 funds, €6.4bn).

Novethic released the report on 2 June.